Nov 29 2016

#NewToYou2016 Book Reviews, Goals, and NaNoWriMo Ate My Brain

goals image

Nanowrimo buddy J Lenni Dorner

NaNoWriMo is almost over!

Want to be buddies there? (If we’re not already.)

November was an interesting month. I have to catch up on counting my words, as I was away from my computer for a few days while visiting family members who live “off the grid.”
Good news! I was a runner up in the 5th Annual Spooktoberfest writing contest 2016.
Bad news A short story I submitted for the Creative Writing Institute’s Anthology contest didn’t make the cut.
Exciting news I only need 58 more Twitter followers to meet the 2016 goal!
Sad news The best friend of my assistant (who I’ve become friends with over the years as well) is in danger of losing the family home. That’s seven people in need of help. (Details below)


  • Publish two decent-selling book series (speculative fiction)
  • Survive at least another 38 years
  • There’s also the Bucket List.


2016 Goals:

@JLenniDorner on Twitter

  • Have 6500 Twitter followers ~ currently at 6442 — UP 108 from last month
  • Download the update for my blog themeMischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Keep Supporting Diverse Books
  • Be part of 4 blog hops/fests.Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Participate in at least 2 #OABookClub reads Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Rewrite and edit my urban fantasy novel, then get the new query letter out there PUBLISH Beta 1 of 4 stage.
  • Enter 3 writing contests 1- Entered #WRiTECLUB2016, got in. 2- Entered and won OA Flash Fiction 3- Entered Creative Writing Institute’s Anthology contest Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goalNUMBER 4 Entered the IWSG anthology contest
  • Publish or be published somewhereMischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goalx3!
  • Participate in Reading Challenges


I won at book BINGO

Book Bingo card of @JLenniDorner Autumn 2016

Goals for December:

WEP Utopian Dreams Challenge

Review of Goals for November:

  • Leave a comment on 20 blogsMischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Read and review two booksMischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Interview another Debut Author to feature at OAMischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Enjoy my role in Pass or Pages at OAMischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal
  • Win NaNoWriMo Mischief Managed because @JLenniDorner accomplished this goal


#NaNoWinner16 @JLenniDorner



@JLenniDorner is the Interviewer for the Operation Awesome blog Debut Author Spotlight on Wednesdays Would you please take a moment to share the debut author image? It would mean a great deal not only to me, but to any debut author who is interviewed as a result. Thanks so much!

Have goals? Need encouragement? This blog hop is for you!

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New To You 2016 reading challenge #NewToYou2016#NewToYou2016
I have not read either of these books or, as far as I know, anything by either of these authors previously.

4 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
Ansible 15715
by Stant Litore
It’s a very different and interesting story. I like where it went. A very unusual psi twist. A good sci-fi short.

5 star rating image on the blog of @JLenniDorner
The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul
by Deborah Rodriguez

It’s hard for me, given that I spent the bulk of my formative years around those who practice the ways of my tribe, to understand inequality. The silent (or slipped screamed) rule that a human’s value and importance depends on which dangling body part they have and the proximity of it to the ground, and then by the percent of pigment of their skin. It’s one of those bizarre concepts that so many people I’ve met since wandering into the “civilized” world (I’m fairly certain the dictionary people use sarcasm more often than the public realizes) all agree exists, but none have a plausible or logical explanation as to why it exists. Many fight it, and that’s good, but it seems that the equality I was raised around is very difficult to comprehend. I fear that it slips from me sometimes as I am away from it so much. And it makes me feel alone, to fit in neither where I came from or where I decided to go.

Because of this, I found myself deeply identifying with several of the characters in this book. Characters of such different backgrounds that this book is guaranteed to be diverse no matter who the reader is. And woven in there is this beautiful almost poetry of lines, and facts that overwhelm the mind. This is a book we should all experience, not just read, and be thankful that such writing exists. Here is a writer to strive to emulate. If you seek a book to discuss, to sink your teeth and soul into, this is the one I suggest. Please note that there are some moments in the book that discuss the difference between helping in the way help is wanted versus helping in an intrusive way that may be less helpful. Those from nations who sometimes make others feel that they know what’s best and that’s the only way may feel off-put.

There is some realistic violence and haunting images in the book.

The quotes/ passages that most stuck with me were:

If everybody has a gun, everybody is prepared to kill and to die.

… the Afghan fertility rate was the second highest in the world, but that Afghanistan was second in only to Sierra Leone for maternal mortality rates, that every twenty-eight minutes a woman died in Afghanistan during childbirth.

Without electricity at night, there was little man-made light to diffuse the natural light that emanated from above. It was as if you could see into the sky, she thought, through its layers and into its core. Layers of stars, like translucent blanket upon blanket.

But she wanted to be a part of the celebration and show Sunny respect for her holiday.


The last one really stuck with me. These people from different backgrounds and beliefs stuck by each other and respected one another. As December approaches and the inevitable memes and shares that degrade and mock rather than celebrate start cropping up, consider what the world might be like if we did respect each other a little more.

Backlist Books Reading Challenge


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  1. As usual you have a set of challenging goals! Well done for the runner-up achievement and you’ve nearly hit your Twitter goal -yay!!!! Best of luck in winning NaNo. You’ve got 2 more days to go…
    Ruth Livingstone has this post to share Word of the day: HiraethMy Profile
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    1. Thanks! I did manage to reach the goal, once I counted the words that hadn’t been typed in here yet.

  2. I laughed out loud at your goal to live another 38 years–not because it’s laughable, but because I love that you’ve set a goal on that front. That’s just not something I’d ever think about. Yes, I want to live to a decent old age, but I’ve never put a number on it. Maybe because I’ve seen too many people suddenly go. The focus for me is to live each day to its fullest.
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    1. I added that a year or two ago when I was dead for a minute or two. So yeah, kind of me making light of that.

  3. Yay for the good stuff and hopefully the bad stuff will turn out for the good. Another 38 years sounds good but that would make me pretty old. But if I’m in relatively good health then I go for as long as I’m able. Hope you meet all of your goals successfully.

    Arlee Bird
    Arlee Bird has this post to share Scandinavian Shuffle (#BOTB)My Profile
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  4. Way to go with all of your goals!!!
    I hope you have a strong finish for the end of the year!
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    • Misha on December 5, 2016 at 5:46 AM

    You did great! Well done on winning NaNo. ^_^
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